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Old 11-05-2005, 09:03 AM
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Lightbulb Metro-east housing market is on target to match last year's success

Rising interest rates have not stifled another year of surging home sales in the metro-east.

Historically low rates are long gone, but the local housing market is on target to match last year's success. Belleville Realtor and newly elected Illinois Association of Realtors President Stan Sieron said that as long as consumers can afford to make mortgage payments, they will continue to buy higher-priced homes.

"I think we're probably in good shape," Sieron said. "Investors in our area continue to look at real estate as a good investment for them."

According to numbers from the state Realtor's Association, 3 percent more homes were sold from January through September this year than the first nine-month period in 2004. The association's count is 142,207 new and existing homes have been bought this year through Sept. 30 compared to 138,077 sales reported during that span a year ago.

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